LoSoCal: A love for travel here in SoCal, even with all of the quirks! That's the gist of it.
I have a very adventurous spirit, or so I’ve been told over the last several decades. I believe it. You know you are adventurous when you meet up with a friend that you haven’t seen for a while, and their first question is “where are you living these days?” Ha! That is a fair inquiry. I am guilty of being a bit more free spirited than most folks. With no children in the mix, except two of the most adorable pups whom I cherish and call my very own, I can admit that I have lived a life that has had its fair share of freedom...and adventure.
That being said, I can claim without a doubt that my life has been anything BUT boring, and I’ve been called toward a variety of spontaneous and exploratory excursions. Some of my “joie de vivre” has carried me around the world to wander and enjoy the neighborhoods, streets, alleyways, shorelines and glorious sights of France, Puerto Rico, Australia and more. Not surprisingly however, most of my fondest memories involving planes, trains and automobiles have happened right here in SoCal. I have done plane rides up the coast and back. I have done train rides too.
But, at this point in my life, I can honestly say I’ve lost count of how many road trips I have taken up and down the coast of California from San Diego all the way up to San Francisco and back again. During this particular (and what has grown to become), regular roadtrip, I never avoided an opportunity to stop along the way. For this reason, my experiences are many and my stories about travel in California abound. It wasn’t about getting to my destination up North with any sense of urgency either, so I have become comfortable with the pattern of getting on the road with a full tank of gas, and then deciding to get off the freeway suddenly at an exit on the I-5, I-405, Highway 101, or whichever route I happened to choose during these journeys. I would deliberately and randomly park in the neighborhoods and communities in the smaller pockets surrounding the Metropolitan cities of California so I could absorb as much of the culture here as possible, while travelling along the California coast.
I love this state “body and soul,” and I wanted to connect with California. I desired to know her more- her people, her scenery, her vibe and her essence. Part of my travels took me to places that I would have never imagined because they were so magical and mesmerizing that they literally took my breath away. It wasn’t always landscapes and picturesque beaches that had me in awe of California’s beauty. Often times, it was just as I explained moments ago...a sudden stop off the freeway, and then there I am, seated at a small cafe where I am enjoying a locally roasted cup of coffee that was brewed to perfection. And, on another journey not long ago when I was passing through Santa Barbara, I decided to stop for one of my “road trip treats.” Yet again, I found myself devouring a decadent tiramisu paired perfectly with a glass of full-bodied Sangiovese at “Intermezzo,” a local restaurant in the downtown area that’s a bit off the beaten path. Admittedly, I devoured the tiramisu. And, I sipped the wine, while sitting on their outdoor patio with elegant decor and ambiance that transported me into a daydream where I imagined that I was sitting and sipping my vino in Rome. Happy sigh.
I love excellent cuisine as well, so over time I’ve created a list of my personal favorite restaurants and eateries that are scattered from North to South along the California coastlines. As far as I’m concerned, when one is traveling the fun should never be limited to the taste buds alone, and so I must admit that there are several other indulgences which have hit my pocket book for afternoons of local boutique shopping, massages, yoga classes, mani/pedis and more. Oh- and some of these other fun activities don’t break the bank, like hiking and sightseeing.
And, this is why California has my heart forever…California is my love- quirks and all!
California has the largest population of all of the states in America- 40 million people estimated as far as most census sites are claiming. 40 million SMART Americans have fallen in love like myself and we never leave...not if we can help it !!!
California is not only gorgeous practically every, single gosh-darn day of the year, but it is interesting and it is exciting! Anyone who has lived here for any length of time or visited for a weekend or more, will tell you with great enthusiasm that “Californians have personality.” This applies to both Northern and Southern Californians, of course, but I do believe that those of us in SoCal are a bit more quirky. I think it has to do with the weather, because a great deal of us, from what I have noticed, are so high on sunshine that we can’t help it! That’s right dude. Californians are pretty RAD! (No these words have not gone out of style in SoCal like neon green and shoulder pads died their very necessary death back in the eighties. I say with full confidence that “dude” and “rad” are here to stay. Lol.) Our vernacular in SoCal is a direct reflection of how unconventional we tend to be.
The beauty of this, in my opinion, is because it’s a general theme here to “do you” and “be your unique and effervescent self,” we tend to set trends and attract other like-minded quirky birds to this region. Yes, it is partially the weather, but I believe it is more than just that. It’s the energy. I think the vibe of California is more progressive, like New York City and some of the other larger Metro areas across the nation, only in California it seems to have touched the majority of the entire state (and it is a very large one at that). So, LoSoCal readers...thanks for the love! If you like this post, stay tuned for more future postings with this theme. I am getting back to my blog and writing, which I lost connection with due to freelance work and other distractions, but no more!
The blog posts that I post in the months to come will highlight just this, with a very loving and devoted “special attention” given to Southern California. I want to write about my experiences in California, and mainly SoCal to share some of the stories that have caused me to embrace such a deep love, loyalty and fascination with this pocket of the globe. 🌞🌴💖
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Owner, Lead Blogger
Hello, my name is Karen Vazquez. I have lived in Southern California for over thirty years. I realized about four years ago that it was time for me to give back to this wonderful community by supporting local SoCal businesses, performers, restaurants, spas, boutiques, fitness studios, farmers markets and more. My support shines through here by highlighting these fabulous local SoCal spots. You can also follow me on Instagram, Twitter, PInterest and LinkedIn. I will be featuring many local destinations in the area that have been my personal favorites for years and am currently recruiting guest bloggers to expand the voice of LoSoCal. I have had guest bloggers in the past, but aim to incorporate local SoCal bloggers on a regular basis as a fun, creative and collaborative way to connect with the community here. Essentially, LoSoCal is a community blog, and it is meant to be resource to locals in this area and visitors from around the world. Please like or follow LoSoCal on the social media business pages and tell your contacts about the blog. Thanks for stopping by...
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LoSoCal and Local SoCal Lifestyle TM